Just 50 yards from the turquoise waters of the Atlantic in postcard-pretty Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, 101 Ocean has a breezy, informal vibe that's just right after a day of swimming in the surf or fishing at the pier. Owner Mike Batt rebuilt an old Mulligan's two years ago so he could have a place to hang out with friends. Manager Anthony D'Elia brought along more than 20 years of experience (Penrod's, Big City Tavern), and chef Chris Magielnicki has a knack with seafood.
Sit under paddle fans indoors or out and lunch or snack on salads, burgers, pizza, pasta or cracker-thin flatbreads topped with smoked salmon and crème fraiche or lemon pepper chicken and roasted peppers. Seafood plays a starring role in lobster ravioli, mussels in tomato basil sauce or white wine and garlic and a platter loaded with oysters, clams, mussels, Florida lobster tails and peel-and-eat shrimp on ice with horseradish-spiked cocktail sauce.
If a day in the sun has worked up your appetite, there's a 16-ounce, bone-in cowboy steak with red wine demi-glace and Parmesan mashed potatoes or lasagne layered with sweet sausage, ricotta and marinara sauce. Lighter dishes include the goat cheese salad with baby greens, endive, sun-dried cranberries and candied walnuts in grainy mustard vinaigrette or pan-fried red snapper with stir-fried vegetables.
And save room for white chocolate bread pudding with blueberries pooled in raspberry sauce.